New Zealand’s freshwater resources have come under increased scrutiny over the last decade or so, culminating in the recent National Policy Statement aimed at strengthening the planning, allocation, utilization and monitoring of the quantity and quality of our freshwater resources. The NPS-FM provides direction on how local authorities are to carry out their responsibilities under the Resource Management Act 1991 when it comes to managing fresh water. As such local authorities are increasingly looking to alternative management strategies and practices to help achieve national objectives at the local scale. While the NPS-FM is silent on specific strategies for managing freshwater resources, globally there has been an ever greater emphasis on the use of market or pseudo market based practices based on a perceived ‘win-win’ outcome. Environmental compensation, offset mitigation, and biodiversity offsets epitomize this ideal and have become prominent tools in local authority’s toolboxes for counteracting adverse environmental effects on both terrestrial and aquatic resources. Are these tools a sure pathway to greater losses? Can they produce gains as part of the stormwater management tool box, under the current New Zealand context? This paper briefly explores the jagged problem of offsetting by examining some of the challenges, in the context of offsetting in NZ, with the aim of better understanding the practicability of freshwater offset mitigation succeeding as a stormwater management tool under the New Zealand context.